Cyclone Yasi only affected 13 per cent of the Great Barrier Reef, Australian marine scientists have reported.

Marine scientists at the Great Barrier Reef say that the damage done to the underwater landscape by last month’s cyclone Yasi is “patchy”.

Passengers planning on booking flights to Australia to see the reef may have thought twice, after the tropical storm hit the country’s east coast on February 2nd.

However, Dr Paul Marshall, assessment coordinator at the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, said that only 13 per cent of the reef was exposed to the cyclone’s destructive power.

“The good news is that the damage to these reefs has been patchy,” he said, “Cyclone Yasi tracked between the main tourism sites in Cairns and Port Douglas and we were very pleased to find that those areas are still healthy and thriving.”

Winds of up to 285 kmph hit the Australian coast during the category-five storm, leading to some corals that are over 100 years old being tipped on their sides.

Nonetheless, Queensland tourist office has claimed that visitors to the region will find that it is business as usual just six weeks after the powerful cyclone took place.

Written by Erin Marshall

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